Los Angeles, Rancho Cucamonga, receive first electric fire engines in North America – Daily Bulletin

Los Angeles and Rancho Cucamonga will get the first electric fire trucks in all of North America, with LA planning to place its in Hollywood this year and Rancho planning to build its new fire station due to open in late 2023.

“This will be the future of fire fighting,” said Assistant Chief Wade White of the Los Angeles Fire Department.

They are produced by the Austrian manufacturer Rosenbauer and are the first trucks with a fully electric drive.

Still, everyone will come with a small diesel engine, just in case.

There are currently only three such fire engines in the world – the model is called Revolutionary Technology. One in Berlin, another in Amsterdam and Dubai has the third.

The base cost for a Rosenbauer RT is $ 900,000. With the extra bells and whistles the two southern California fire departments want, their electric fire trucks will each cost just under $ 1.3 million.

The design of the fire truck will attract the attention of the viewer.

From the front, the truck retains its traditional look. But from the side you could mistake it for a city bus. Los Angeles will be painted in the agency’s traditional red livery, while Rancho Cucamonga’s will be white like the rest of the city’s fleet.

While standard trucks usually set up their gear and gear on exposed racks on the sides of the truck, the RT’s gear is in compartments that can close while in motion, giving the truck a larger appearance.

Some members of the Rancho Cucamonga Fire District traveled to Berlin to test the truck on much narrower roads compared to those in the US. Even so, the truck drives surprisingly well in tight situations, said Mike McCliman, Rancho Cucamonga fire chief.

In December 2020, Rosenbauer brought an RT truck to Dodger Stadium for the Los Angeles Fire Department to inspect.

“We have to drive it and kick the tires,” said White. “The Hollywood Hills are narrow and with the reduced turning radius (the truck) they are perfect for navigating the area.”

Whether the RT will have any disadvantages compared to a standard truck remains to be seen, McCliman said. How will the truck react to different terrain, in wild areas, in urban and metropolitan areas?

Each RT is tailored to the departments. This allows for nearly identical replication of equipment and hose placement.

“Our team doesn’t have to adapt to a new setup,” said McCliman.

The two built-in batteries can be recharged quickly. The built-in range extender, the small diesel engine that drives a large generator, enables the truck to increase its electric range and pump operation. The trucks will have 33 gallon diesel tanks.

In Berlin, McCliman said, the truck pumped electricity and sucked water from the canals for more than an hour without the range extender operating.

“We were electric (at Rancho Cucamonga) practically the whole time,” said McCliman.

When the truck comes to a standstill, the engine is automatically switched off, while the lights and equipment continue to be powered by the batteries. This reduces the noise level, which is particularly beneficial in an emergency location where the crews need to be concentrated.

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